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Glucantime efficacy in the treatment of zoonotic cutaneous leishmaniasis.

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Department of Parasitology and Mycology, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.


Pentavalent antimony (SbV) compounds are still considered the first line of treatment for all forms of leishmaniasis. There have been reports of drug resistance and unresponsiveness to treatment with these drugs. We investigated the clinical response to treatment of cutaneous leishmaniasis with glucantime, the drug of choice for all forms of leishmaniasis in Iran. All individuals suspected of cutaneous leishmaniasis from October 2007 to March 2008 were included in the study if met specific criteria. After laboratory diagnosis and parasite identification by PCR, 43 patients agreed to participate and complete the protocol for treatment. Meglumine antimoniate (glucantime) was given at a dose of 20 mg/kg/day for 20 days (two 10-day periods) according to a World Health Organization (WHO) recommended protocol. Response to treatment was evaluated 6 weeks after initiation of treatment. Fifteen patients (34.9%) were clinically unresponsive to glucantime treatment while the remaining 28 patients (65.1%) responded to treatment. There were no statistically significant differences by occupation, gender, chronicity of the disease before starting treatment, number of lesions, or age between the glucantime sensitive and resistant patients. Our study showed a significant level of unresponsiveness to glucantime among patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania major in Iran. These findings highlight the need for new treatment regimens.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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